About Veracruz

The Four Times Heroic City of Veracruz is currently an important commercial port distinguished for the joy of its people and their taste for fun music and dancing. In 1518, the first Spanish expedition reached the coast of Veracruz under the leadership of Juan de Grijalva. Arriving from Cuba, these conquerors were on a mission to locate all rivers and beaches. Their research prompted the arrival of more conquerors and on April 22, 1519, Captain Hernan Cortes arrived to found the Villa Rica of Veracruz on a Good Friday. The city and port became the link between the new province and Spain. From here, precious metals, fruit, seeds and cotton were sent to the Old World, while the colonizing Spaniards received domestic animals, slaves, gun powder and red wine, among other European products. However, with the same fate as other Mexican ports during the XVI century, Veracruz suffered numerous pirate attacks ransacking the Spanish ships carrying loads of gold, silver and other treasures conquerors sent to the Mother Nation. This forced the city to construct fortresses, bastions and put together the Barlovento Army for its protection. Furthermore, it also prompted the villa’s settlement to transfer six times, finally relocating to its original site, between Cerro de los Metales and Cerro de Bernal, now known as Punta Villa Rica. However, on this last occasion the city’s name had changed to Nueva Veracruz. And on the 8th of May 1608, it was elevated to the category of city by King of Spain Felipe III. Mexico’s War of Independence was supported by many people from Veracruz; outstanding among them were young Evaristo Molina and Cayetano Perez. Numerous battles between Insurgents and Realists were fought on its soil, and it is worth mentioning that Veracruz was one of the first villas founded during the Conquest and also the last venue defended by Realist Spaniards, perched within the fortress of San Juan de Ulua, they fought their last battle in November 1825. In 1847, an invasion by the United States of America overtook the port of Veracruz for four months, until the Treaties of Guadalupe Hidalgo were signed, forcing Mexico to “sell” more than half of its territory in exchange for its freedom. The city and port of Veracruz are located on the coast of the Gulf o Mexico on the southeast of the State. Of humid tropical climate, it has an average annual temperature of 77º F and abundant rains during summer and autumn. Currently, the port of Veracruz is the number one commercial port in the country, transporting 23% of national goods. According to data from the last Censo Nacional de Población y Vivienda INEGI 2005, the city registered a population of 420 inhabitants; however, its metropolitan area is home to 677,000 persons together with the contiguous municipality of Boca del Rio, which enjoys beautiful beaches and a great tourism infrastructure.

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